Just in time for the peak of fall colors, Seattle Parks and Recreation, the University of Washington Botanic Gardens and the Arboretum Foundation have unveiled a major new installation of way-finding signs and two new trails with a wealth of informational and educational signage at the Washington Park Arboretum.
“We are thrilled about these enhancements to the Arboretum. We have been working very diligently on this project for more than three years,” said Seattle Parks and Recreation Project Manager Andy Sheffer. “The new way-finding and interpretation signage allows visitors to make the most of their time, and provides them with a better understanding of the Arboretum.”
More than 30 new signs are spread across the Arboretum. In park visitor surveys the most common suggestion was the need for better information and more interpretation.
The University of Washington and its director of the UW Botanical Gardens, Dr. Sarah Reichard, oversaw the two new interpretive trails: the half-mile “Pinetum Loop” and one-mile “Lookout Loop.”
“Many visitors don’t realize the Arboretum is home to one of the most important collections of trees and plants in North America,” said Dr. Reichard. “These new trails and signs will help us better share information about this extraordinary oasis with the public.”
The University of Washington has also printed new trail maps that are available at the Graham Visitors Center, and online at http://depts.washington.edu/uwbg/docs/TrailMap.pdf.
“We were very sensitive to honoring the fact that any changes or improvements to the 230-acre Arboretum required great care and attention. That’s why so much time was given to designing and placing the new signage, and making it as unobtrusive yet, as accessible as possible,” Sheffer explained.
“We believe we addressed that in a thoughtful and careful manner,” Reichard explained.
The Washington Park Arboretum is a hidden gem on the shores of Lake Washington. Jointly managed by the UW and the Seattle Parks and Recreation, its 230 acres are a dynamic assortment of plants found nowhere else. The Graham Visitors Center has an information desk and gift shop managed by the Arboretum Foundation. The Japanese Garden, located at the south end of the Arboretum has an entrance fee, and is managed by Seattle Parks and Recreation.
For more information, please contact Andy Sheffer, Seattle Parks and Recreation, at (206) 684-7041 or firstname.lastname@example.org; or Sarah Reichard PhD, UW Botanical Gardens, at (206) 616-5020 email@example.com.